Author: Fiona Gilbert BSc (Hons), MA
5 NHS Continuing Healthcare Myths Busted
There are many myths and questions surrounding NHS continuing healthcare. We have taken a look at the five most common myths in our recent post.
With the United Kingdom’s life expectancy steadily increasing, many of us are likely to receive some form of care at some point during our lives. Consequently, there is an increasing number of people being forced to part with their savings, and even their homes, to enable them to meet the cost of rising care fees.
To begin with, many believe that the system for NHS continuing healthcare is straightforward and that care would be provided to any individual with primary health needs. Unfortunately, it can often be a complicated assessment process and can leave many families waiting for more answers. It is, however, beneficial to speak with a professional regarding your or your loved one’s options for continuing healthcare, and that is where Compass Continuing Healthcare can be a helping hand. In this feature, we have taken a look at five myths surrounding NHS continuing healthcare:
1 – You have to be in a nursing home to be considered for funding
The National Framework for continuing healthcare states that an assessor should not consider the setting of an individual’s care when deciding whether or not they meet the eligibility criteria for funding.
Despite this, it is not uncommon to discover that this guideline has not been followed when a formal assessment is undertaken. However, if there is any evidence that suggests an assessor has taken into account the setting of the individual’s care, the decision can be appealed.
2 – I have been told that you have to be terminally ill or be suffering from the final stages of a disease to qualify for funding
Funding for continuing healthcare is not given based on the existence of a specific medical diagnosis and even on the length of time that an individual is expected to live. Instead, the assessment is grounded on the person's day-to-day needs. However, as a loved one’s condition may deteriorate towards the end of their life, it may be easier to secure funding at this stage. In this situation, you will be able to request an urgent assessment for fast-track continuing healthcare funding to be carried out. This will mean that funding may be fast-tracked and can be provided almost immediately.
The only requirement for fast-track entitlement to continuing healthcare funding is that the individual has a rapidly deteriorating condition, that may be entering a terminal phase.
3 - My loved one owns a house and can afford their care fees; does that mean we can’t apply for an assessment?
NHS continuing healthcare is not means-tested; therefore the value of someone’s estate or home should have no bearing on whether or not they are eligible. If there is any evidence that suggests that an assessor did consider the value of their home or estate when reaching a verdict, this decision may be flawed, and you would then have the right to appeal the decision.
4 – There is no point having an assessment because you won’t qualify
This statement is completely untrue, as no one can be told whether or not an individual will be eligible for NHS continuing healthcare until a proper assessment has taken place. Many people are told that they ‘don’t qualify’ and yet their needs will either not have been assessed at all or will have been assessed without regards to the guidelines.
Until an assessment has been carried out, you will not know whether or not yourself or a loved one qualifies.
5 - If you have a spouse, you will not be eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare because your spouse can pay for your care
Again, this is completely false, as no one should ever be asked to pay for someone else’s care, nor should anyone be asked to sell their home or move out to fund this. A person’s financial situation should not be taken into consideration when going through the assessment process; if this does happen, you will have the right to appeal.
There are many myths surrounding NHS continuing healthcare, and it can often become a stressful and upsetting time for everyone involved. Here at Compass Continuing Healthcare, we have an experienced team on hand to answer any questions you may have surrounding your eligibility. If you need any assistance, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us.
Author: Fiona Gilbert BSc (Hons), MA
Do not delay, contact us today. We specialise in securing funding from day 1 and assisting families with the process from the outset. Don’t wait until a negative decision has been made and it is then necessary to have to appeal the outcome. This can take many months and all the while the patient will be having to pay the cost of their care.
Did you know?
If an individual is approaching the end of their life then a “fast track” Continuing healthcare funding assessment may be appropriate. This enables the individual to receive prompt NHS funding to meet the cost of care at the end of life stage.